Bearcats claw Indians 40-14
Grafton jumped out to a 27-0 halftime lead and then cruised to a 40-14 win over Berkeley Springs, in Grafton, on Friday, October 21.
Grafton's defense smothered the Indians in the opening half, holding the Tribe scoreless and not allowing a first down until the 4:25 mark of the second quarter. Despite the slow start, Berkeley Springs was only down 13-0 with less than three minutes remaining in the opening half, but a 50-yard touchdown run by Bearcat quarterback Ivy Bartlett followed by a Berkeley Springs fumble put the Indians in a deep hole that was too deep to crawl out of.
Berkeley Springs set up a nice return on the kickoff following Bartlett's 50-yard touchdown scamper, but fumbled the ball near the midfield stripe.
Grafton took advantage of the Indian miscue, when several plays later Bartlett tossed a 25-yard touchdown stretching Grafton's lead to 27-0.
The Indians returned the ensuing kickoff down to the Bearcat 47 yard line, and then moved the ball into scoring territory before the Bearcats intercepted a pass on their own goal line to end the half.
Berkeley Springs coach Angelo Luvara was frustrated by Berkeley Springs first-half performance, but conceded that it might have had something to do with the strong opposition.
"They (Grafton) have a pretty good football team," said the Indian coach. “They were lot bigger than us on the lines and that played a factor, especially in sloppy conditions. Our kids played really hard. I certainly think the effort was there, but we just couldn't get anything going offensively in the first half. I thought our offense took a step backward, but that could have had something to do with Grafton."
Berkeley Springs received the opening kickoff of the second half, but were unable to move the ball and had to punt it back to their Taylor County opponent. Derrick Swink got off a nice punt that was downed inside the Bearcat 10-yard line.
But, the poor field position had little effect, as Grafton ground out a long, time-consuming, drive that ended in a 5-yard touchdown pass (on fourth-and-goal) with only 37 ticks remaining in the third quarter, giving the Bearcats an insurmountable 34-0
Grafton added one more touchdown, sandwiched between a pair of Berkeley Springs scores for the final margin of victory.
Zach White scored Berkeley Springs first touchdown of the game on a 4-yard run midway through the final quarter, and quarterback Mark Cowles tossed a 12-yard touchdown pass to Andrew Truax with only 10 seconds remaining in the game. Zach Wise added both extra point attempts, making the final 40-14.
The Indians will end the season this Friday, October 28, when they take on Northern Garrett in Accident, Md.
"Northern is playing real well," said Luvara of his next opponent. “They just beat Allegany 42-12 this past week and will provide a stern test. We will need to control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball to get the win."
First downs 9 16
Rushing yds 23-102-1 td
Total yds 40-208 60-404
Ind. rushing - Zach White 14-68-1 td; TJ Patrick 6-11; Cowles 3-23.
Receiving - Truax 4-70-1 td; Brady Spielman 3-26; White 1-5; Patrick 1-3.
Tackles - Anthony LaFollette 16; Preston Hovermale six, Kyle Shambaugh six, Matt Arrowood six, Loguen McKee five, Cody Burch five, CJ Gosey five, Richard Montelius three and Devin Gageby three.